Fancy cooking one chook and from there milk the chook right down to its bones? Yeah I did just that... can you imagine it? I roasted one chicken and got a lot of leftovers that I had to be creative to finish them up. I guess I must have bought a rather huge chook for the two and half of us!!!
I was browsing Ruth's blog when I came across her post of Perfect Roast Chicken. I read on and I was intrigued by the simplicity of the recipe and method of cooking she had adapted from Joy of Cooking, Neil Perry & Thomas Keller (does French Laundry ring a bell?). I also delved into the steps Thomas Keller had posted in Epicurious. Click here for the simple instructions.
Like Ruth, I did not use any butter or oil. I dried my chook as dry as possible with loads of kitchen towels plus I hung up my chook for a couple of hours with a tray beneath to catch the liquid dripping off it. Next, I merely rubbed the chook with sea salt and stuffed 2 bulbs of garlic in the cavity. Trussed the chook then stuffed into the oven. Voila... a really perfect roast of crispy skin but tender meat!
I was really amazed by its simplicity without any butter or oil rubbed on it, no herbs, no need to turn over the chook and best of all no need to even baste the chook!!! Woohoo and I got juicy meat and crispy skin as opposed to what was published in the latest copy of Flavours magazine where oil or butter is needed to prevent the chook from drying out!
My only issue is that whilst roasting there were so much oil dripped out onto the pan and they splattered all over my oven!!! It's really a tough job to clean the oven up as I have trouble reaching the nooks and corners plus those spots above the heating element. Anyone out there have tips to clean up a normal oven without self-cleansing function???
Anyway, on a separate tray, I've roasted some vegetables ie. pumpkin, onions, bell peppers (capsicum) and carrots. Just cut them up, sprinkle olive oil and sea salt all over in a baking tray. Place them inside the oven the same time as the chook but they need a shorter baking time though depending on the size of the vegetables.
We only managed to devoured the thighs, wings and part of the breast. With so much leftovers, I got a wee bit creative and came out with the various ways to finish them up.
First, the easiest was to come out with was a roast chicken with mayonnaise. All I did was chopped up the meat into tiny morsels, mix in some mayo and freshly ground black pepper. Once done, I topped up onto a bed of greens and some of those roasted vegetables and the roasted garlic too. Drizzled in some extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar. I've also stuffed them into pita breads to make roast chicken mayo sandwich.
I've also made another salad but this time I thinly sliced the breast and on the bed of greens, I've some fresh capsicums and cubed pears. A simple drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar completes this simple and refreshing salad.
Four down and one more to go!!! The last one was a very unconventional and unimaginable way of using up a roast chicken leftovers. I made a chicken rice porridge with the bones of the chicken cavity!!! Devoid of meat after making the salads, I added the bones whilst cooking up the rice porridge which provided a very sweet and garlicky taste since I've stuffed some garlic in the cavity. When the porridge is almost done, I added in some shredded chicken meat and chopped salted duck eggs. Adjust seasoning of salt and white pepper. Topped up with more white pepper and a dash of sesame oil when serving to complete the porridge.
So that was my story of one chook, five ways... hoped you had enjoyed it and thanks to Ruth for highlighting this wonderful recipe.
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